Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Spooky Time

Sorry it's been so long since I've posted anything here. I've been having some storage/download issues. The blog's getting more popular than I expected which couldn't make me happier.
Halloween is my favorite times of year and I've got a few tunes to spice up your Halloween parties. Dig these!

Dusty Springfield: Spooky

You gotta love Dusty's cool delivery on this track from 1968. Originally recorded by Classics IV, I think Dusty's version is the definitive one. You can find it on the re-release of Dusty....Definitely.

Nina Simone: I Put A Spell On You

Something about Nina Simone's voice makes this cover completely eerie. While the Screamin' Jay Hawkins original is comical, this version is dead serious. Supposedly The Beatles got the bridge for Michelle after hearing this tune. You can find this track on Nina's great 1965 release I Put A Spell On You.

Frank De Jo Jo: Turn Off The Lights

This cover of the Larry Young's 1975 sexual classic takes on a whole new scary vibe at Halloween. This track is taken from Ubiquity's first Rewind! compilation.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Pledging My Love

Here's a special happy birthday post for my wife Alisen.

Aretha Franklin: Pledging My Love/The Clock

Here's one Alisen hasn't heard yet. It's a beautiful cover from the brand new Rhino collection entitled....(take a deep breath)...Aretha Franklin Rare & Unreleased Recordings from the Golden Reign of The Queen of Soul. This collection a real treasure and a must own for any fan of soul music.

James Brown: For Once In My Life

One of my wife and my's many favorites taken from JB's 1970 big band explosion Soul On Top. It's tough to beat Stevie's original but Mr. Brown sure comes close.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

The Soul of John Lennon

There is no greater tragedy in music than the loss of John Lennon in 1980. His music and message of peace and love will go on forever as will his remarkable musical legacy. Today would be his 67th birthday and I've selected just a few soulful covers to show the wide influence his music has had. John Lennon is truly missed and the world was a better place with him in it.

Junior Parker: Tomorrow Never Knows

One of John's first "trippy" songs from 1966's Revolver LP is soulfully covered by Memphis bluesman Junior Parker. You can find this haunting rendition on 1971's Love Ain't Nothin But a Business Goin' On.

The Brothers Johnson: Come Together

Here's a somewhat slick, but definitely funky cover of John's Abbey Road composition. You can find this track on The Brothers' 1976 LP Look Out For #1.

Jackie Robinson: In My Life

This is a tune I often turn to to remind me of John Lennon's genius. It never fails to move me and Jackie Robinson sweet vocals captures the nostalgia of the lyrics. You can find this track on Trojan's uneven Beatles Tribute Box Set.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

A Rainy Day with Ms. James

Leela James: When You Love Somebody

Leela James' 2005 debut LP A Change Is Gonna Come is stellar. Singing well beyond her years Leela lets it all out on this heart ripper.

Etta James: Take It To The Limit

This track from 1994's Live From San Francisco proves what a great singer can do. I'll honestly tell anyone who asks "I HATE THE F_in' EAGLES!" but what Etta does here is simply astonishing. She actually makes me rethink my entire anti-Eagle lifestyle....Then I hear Hotel California and I realize I was right!